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9 Best table tennis rubbers for intermediate players in 2021

Last Updated on 1 month by Shadman

One problem that most intermediate players suffer from is choosing the most suitable rubber for their blades. That is why we’ve brought you our top picks for the 9 best table tennis rubbers for intermediate players in 2021. 

Every table tennis player knows that a table tennis racket has many parts. These parts include the rubber, sponge, blade, and many more. And you’ll have to choose these components based on your playing style.

You may be a player who prioritizes control over speed and like to give the ball a quick spin from time to time. 

This article is mainly for intermediate players who are trying to take their game up a notch. We’ll be emphasizing more on speed, spin, and control. We’ll also be adding a comprehensive buying guide for your convenience. 

best table tennis rubbers for intermediate players

Best table tennis rubbers for intermediate players at a glance.

RubberPerformance
Yasaka Mark V HPSSpeed
Butterfly RoundellSpeed
Nittaku HammondSpeed
Yasaka RiganSpin
Tibhar Evolution EL-SSpin
Yasaka Rakza 7 SoftSpin
XIOM Vega EuropeControl
Butterfly RozenaControl
XIOM Omega VII ProControl

Best Table Tennis Rubbers for Intermediate Players 

Yasaka Mark V HPS Soft

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Hardness

The Yasaka Mark V HPS Soft has a softer sponge than the regular Mark V HPS. Compared to other pieces, this rubber has a medium soft sponge. 

Thickness

The Mark V soft comes in more than one thickness option. Yasaka offers this model from a surprisingly thin 1mm sponge to a max sponge. This particular unit comes with a thickness of 2mm. 

Color

The coloring of the Mark V Soft rubber is red. 

Description

If you are not sure what playstyle you want to pick up, the Mark V HPS Soft is what you’re looking for. This jack-of-all-trade rubber offers a high degree of versatility. 

Unlike the Mark V HPS, the HPS Soft version has a focus on spin. And thanks to its softer sponge, it proves to be a decent backhand rubber. 

Design

The rubber features a medium-low throw angle that allows more control on flatter shots and drives. It carries the classic Mark V top sheet with a similar sponge. However, the sponge offers more speed than its predecessor. 

User Experience

According to the users, the rubber is not the fastest out there. It has a soft feeling to it. But it’s not so weak as a dampened defensive rubber. 

Butterfly Roundell

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Hardness

The sponge can be rated as a medium soft sponge. 

Thickness

Butterfly offers the Roundell unit at three different thickness levels. This particular unit offers a thickness of 1.9mm. 

Color

The coloring of the Butterfly Roundell rubber is red. 

Description

According to experts, the Butterfly Roundell is more of a controlled version of the Tenergy 05. While they offer a similar speed, the Roundell’s less sensitive to spin and is easier to manage. 

Even though the Roundell’s comparatively less sensitive to spin than the Tenergy 05, you can still generate that level of spin. However, you’ll have to dig the ball into the sponge a bit deeper to do that. 

Design

The Butterfly Roundell is more focused on speed. It has a medium-high throw angle that makes it an excellent choice for your backhand rubber. And thanks to its flexible top sheet of sponge, it can provide overwhelming spin and speed. 

User Experience

It is one of the most popular choices for backhand rubber among users. However, it may take some time to get used to. 

Nittaku Hammond

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Hardness

Like all good intermediate rubbers, the Nittaku Hammond has a medium soft sponge. 

Thickness

The offered thickness on this unit is just the right fit for all-around and offensive plays. 

Color

The coloring of the Nittaku Hammond is black. 

Description

The Nittaku Hammond is a good fit for your forehand. Thanks to its medium-low throw angle, it allows you to drive more power with comparatively little force. It’s a do-it-all rubber. While we can’t classify it as one of the top table tennis rubbers, it’ll get the job done well enough.

The rubber is more suitable for your forehand. But if your backhand game is more focused on lower throw-based play, you can use it as well. 

Design

The Hammond has a medium soft rubber that helps the player deliver a firm forehand drive. The rubber is medium fast with a defensive catapult. It enables you to deliver solid and controlled forehand loops. However, they may lack a little bit of spin. 

User Experience

As the Hammond has low sensitivity to incoming spin, it allows for reasonable control. When hit with power, it will enable the player to hit a downward trajectory. There have been no reported issues with its durability. 

Yasaka Rigan

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Hardness

Yasaka has manufactured the Rigan unit with a sponge hardness of the medium level to offer the experienced player more dynamic speed.  

Thickness

This Yasaka Rigan unit has a thickness of 1.8 millimeters. 

Color

The coloring of the Yasaka Rigan is red. 

Description

The Yasaka Rigan is said to be an upgrade from the Mark V series. It’s an easy-to-pick-up rubber that specializes in control and spin. But do not underestimate the speed this unit offers. The Rigan has an impressive amount of speed as well. 

The Rigan unit is excellent for blocking and a fantastic choice for a backhand rubber. However, you will need good skills and techniques to use them well. That makes it a wonderful choice for intermediate to advanced players. 

Design

The Yasaka Rigan uses the Rakza rubbers that feature a unique pimple design. These pimples allow for a strong balance between speed and spin. And thanks to its featured Hybrid energy, the synergy between its sponge and top sheet provides excellent control and power. 

User Experience

Many have declared the Yasaka Rigan as an upgraded tensioned Yasaka HPS. 

Tibhar Evolution EL-S

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Hardness

The Tibhar Evolution EL-S has a sponge hardness of the medium level to focus more on spins. 

Thickness

It has a thickness of 1.9mm that makes it able to deliver ridiculous spins. 

Color

The coloring of the Tibhar Evolution EL-S is red. 

Description

Tibhar has brought out the Evolution EL-S by significantly improving its predecessor, the Evolution EL-P. The EL-P faced some problems when it came to bounces and the feel of it when hit. Taking measures on that, the EL-S has great bounciness compared to its earlier counterparts. 

Tibhar has mainly focused on the spin when manufacturing the EL-S.  But, that doesn’t mean that it lacks speed or control. The rubber offers adequate speed and great control to its users. 

Design

The Evolution EL-S has a medium-high throw angle that makes it an excellent choice for backhands. Thanks to its marginally smaller sponge pores, it allows the player to spin the ball to a great degree. 

User Experience

Users have described the Evolution EL-S to be able to compete with the Tenergy 05 in terms of spin and throw angle. It is also popular amongst its user base as the highest arc and spin-producing ESN rubber. 

Yasaka Rakza 7

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Hardness

This top-of-the-line product has a medium soft sponge. 

Thickness

Like many other top intermediate rubbers, the Yasaka Rakza 7 has a thickness of 1.8mm.

Color

The coloring of the Yasaka Rakza 7 Soft is black. 

Description

The new Hybrid Energy, Rakza 7 Soft, is one of the most prized innovations of Yasaka. Unlike its Mark V counterparts, this rubber isn’t a jack-of-all-trades but a king of spin.

This top intermediate rubber has a medium-high throw angle that makes it an excellent choice for your backhand rubber. 

It is an ideal choice for you if you’re an aggressive player. The Rakza 7 allows the player to deliver a fast game with its well-controlled shots and astounding spins. It is also perfect for counter-hit shots. 

Design

The Rakza 7 Soft comes equipped with natural gum on its top sheet. That’s why it can provide such an enhanced grip level and a greater power of spin. As Yasaka has combined the top sheet with the new ‘Power Sponge,’ it works in perfect synergy with the top sheet. 

User Experience

Many users have argued that the Rakza 7 delivers even better control than advertised. They also seem to be very satisfied with the durability of its top sheet. 

XIOM Vega Europe DF

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Hardness

To offer a greater degree of control, the Europe DF uses a medium-soft sponge. 

Thickness

This rubber has a thickness of 2 millimeters. 

Color

The coloring of the XIOM Vega Europe DF is red. 

Description

After hearing the XIOM Vega Europe DF name, you may think that it is an upgraded version of the Euro. However, there is no relation between the two models. If you compare the two models, you’ll find out that the DF is faster and offers more control and spin.

The Vega Europe DF comes equipped with the new black carbo-sponge that allows it to generate more power. Due to the addition of the carbo-sponge, the rubber also has more outstanding durability. 

Design

Thanks to its Dynamic Friction (DF) technology, the Europe DF can offer greater ball control and more spin to the player. This technology also makes the top sheet slightly tacky, which provides more grip. It has a medium-high throw angle that makes it a perfect choice for your backhand. 

User Experience

The Vega Europe DF has a fantastic amount of grip. While offering more control, the DF unit also provides more incredible spin thanks to the DF technology. 

Butterfly Rozena

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Hardness

Butterfly has equipped this unit with a sponge with a medium-level hardness to offer greater ball control. 

Thickness

Butterfly offers the Rozena unit in three levels of thickness. They’re 1.7mm, 1.9mm, and 2.1mm. 

Color

The Butterfly Rozena comes in two colors. They are red and black. 

Description

Unlike the above-mentioned Butterfly Roundell, Butterfly Rozena is more focused on control. It employs rose-dyed Spring-sponge technology. This rubber’s top sheet features a high-tension technology. This technology allows it to deliver a little bit of everything. 

While it can’t compete with the Tenergy series in terms of speed, it makes up for that difference with control. After making contact with the ball, the rubber leaves the player some room for adjustment. 

Design

With a high level of tolerance, the rubber helps the player improve their game with time. The Butterfly Rozena features a medium-high throw angle with a good amount of speed and control, making it a perfect candidate for your backhand rubber. 

User Experience

The rubber is very easy to play with. It provides comfortable blocking and a very well-dosed chop game. Overall, this rubber has a good balance between consistency and control. 

XIOM Omega VII Pro

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Hardness

Unlike most control-based rubbers, this unit uses a medium-hard sponge as its base. 

Thickness

The XIOM Omega VII Pro has a thickness of 2 millimeters. 

Color

The coloring of this rubber is black. 

Description

The Omega VII Pro is a very fast rubber that is based on the offense. If you’re an aggressive player, this is the rubber for you. It has a very grippy top sheet that allows the player to produce very heavy spins with ease. 

With its high levels of spins, many get the misconception that this rubber focuses on the spin. However, it is a control-based rubber. And despite its tacky top sheet, this faster rubber blocks very well due to its ability to absorb impact easily. 

Design

This ESN rubber is different from your typical Rasanters. The Omega VII has a rougher top sheet when compared to Rasanters. This tacky top sheet provides more ball control to the player. And paired with its medium-high throw angle, the Omega VII Pro is a perfect choice for your backhand rubber. 

User Experience

The users have a high opinion of this unit. It is a durable yet light rubber that can produce top spins even with very low bounce near the end. And thanks to its greater control, the finishers with this rubber are out of the world brutal. 

What Makes a Rubber Suitable for Intermediate Table Tennis Players?

Choosing a rubber for your forehand is different from selecting a rubber for your backhand. There are various factors that you need to consider when buying a rubber for your ping pong paddle. 

Hardness

The thicker the rubber, the more power you can deliver. So, if you’re choosing rubber for your forehand, it’s better to go for the one with the maximum thickness.

According to the ITTF regulation, your table tennis bats can have a maximum thickness of 4mm. So, it’s a good idea to go for that.

On the other hand, if you’re picking your backhand rubber, you should go for the ones with a thickness of around 2mm to 2.15mm.  

Thickness

The thicker the rubber, the more power your ping pong paddle can deliver with its strokes. So, even if you’re at the starting line, your choice shouldn’t be too thin a rubber, as they will bottom out. 

The Density 

The density of the sponge of your bat relates directly to the quickness of your shots. However, you will also need to exert more energy to do so. So, if you’re buying it for your forehand, you should choose a denser sponge. That way, you can put more power behind your shot. 

But if you’re more of a dense-based player who doesn’t prefer swinging hard, you should go for a softer one. 

Required Throw Angle 

The subject of throw angle is a complicated one. Generally speaking, you hit the ball in front of your body for your backhand shot by closing the table tennis racket more.

So, you’d need a medium to high throw angle when you’re choosing for your backhand. That’s why high-quality backhand rubber often carries a high throw angle.

On the other hand, bounciness is not an essential factor in the case of forehand shots. It would be best if you transferred the force without losing too much energy. That’s why when choosing your forehand; you need to select a rubber with a low to medium-low throw angle. 

Follow the two-color rule [updated December 2020]

Make sure to follow the revised two-color rule imposed by the ITTF Board of Directors. They have agreed to allow four other colors in place of the bright red side. These colors are bright blue, bright green, bright purple/pink, and bright violet. 

Rubber Authorization 

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) allows only authorized table tennis rubbers in official matches. They have a list of the approved rubbers that they update every six months. So, make sure that the rubber you’re buying has the ITTF logo on it. 

Get The Rubber That Complements Your Playing Style

There are mainly three types of playing styles. As an intermediate player, you should be aware of your own style and choose the rubber most suited for your class. 

All-around/counter-attack style

If you’re a player who bases their plays on counterattacks, you should choose a paddle with the most rigid sponge. But make sure that the pimple isn’t too big and offers a generous spin. That way, you can win your games with speed and counters. 

If your play is based on counters, we think that the Yasaka Rakza 7 will be the best choice for you from our list of selections. 

Attacking/offensive style

Offensive players try to overwhelm their opponents with speed and power. For that reason, they prefer paddles with a thicker sponge (more than 2.0mm). A thicker sponge causes the ball to bounce off the paddle faster and allows the player to deliver more power with their strokes. 

The XIOM Omega VII Pro would be the perfect choice for you as an attacking offensive player.

Defensive style

As a general rule of thumb, defensive players tend to choose anti-spin rubber. The anti-spin rubber has a slippery surface, so it offers minimal resistance that reduces friction. As a result, it generates little to no spin. 

We found out the Nittaku Hammond suits the best for a defensive player from our curated list, thanks to its anti-spin attributes. 

Changing Table Tennis Rubbers

Like all things, your paddle’s rubber is going to wear out with time. And the dust particles will damage the surface, which will cause it to lose its tackiness. Moreover, exposure to light, heat, and air will cause the rubber to deteriorate. 

Top players change their rubber often. So, even if you don’t want to change your rubber frequently, you should change it when it starts to lose its tackiness. It is a good idea to change your paddle’s rubber once a year. If you play frequently, you may have to change it more often. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Which rubbers do the professional table tennis players use?

There is no one rubber that professional players use. They all choose their rubbers according to their preferences. However, the Tenergy 05 model has been popular amongst the advanced players for quite some time. It is mainly popular amongst those who attack with topspin. 

Which Rubber can give me the highest spin?

There are different rubbers from different brands that can help you generate a lot of spins. You can choose any of them. Some of these include the Tenergy 05, Nittaku Sieger PK50, and many more. 

Is Tenergy rubber the best?

Tenergy is a long-standing name in the table tennis rubber industry. They have a wide selection of high-quality products. While they’re a great choice for some, they’re not quite suitable for everyone. They also come with a high price tag which is off-putting for some people. 

Does the red or black color matter?

The red and the black rubbers are both similar in terms of density, hardness, and sponge. The main difference between them is their tackiness. The black rubber tends to be tackier than its red counterpart. 

Bottom Line

It would be best if you put effort into finding which rubber works best for you. Don’t just blindly stick to what someone recommended to you a year ago or what you’ve always used. 

You should do your research work and try out a number of rubbers. And now that you’ve found this article, you’re already a step ahead of others. 

Don’t think you’ll find the right equipment very quickly. You’ll most likely make a lot of mistakes. But that’s okay. After a lot of trial and error, you’ll find the best table tennis racket and rubber for you. 

We hope that our 9 Best Table Tennis Rubbers for Intermediate Players In 2021 article will help you through that process. We wish you all the very best for your next match!

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